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How to deal with sexual assault allegations

On Behalf of | Jun 10, 2024 | Criminal Defense

A sexual assault accusation can turn your world upside down. It can also impact every aspect of your life. Suddenly, you find yourself in a situation where every decision matters, from your words to your actions. Understanding your rights and knowing the initial steps to protect yourself is crucial.

What constitutes sexual assault in Texas?

Sexual assault can happen to anyone regardless of gender or sexual orientation. Texas law defines sexual assault as any unwanted sexual contact, including penetration, groping or forced sexual acts. This can occur through threats, coercion or when the victim cannot consent due to drugs alcohol or unconsciousness.

What actions can you take?

A sexual assault allegation can be overwhelming, and it is crucial to act immediately.

  • Be cautious who you talk to: Do not speak to law enforcement without your legal counsel present. Anything you say might imply a different meaning, leading to misunderstandings.
  • Gather evidence: Collect any evidence supporting your innocence if possible. This may include witness statements, alibis or documentation that contradicts the accusations.
  • Maintain your composure: Facing allegations like this can be stressful, but maintaining a calm demeanor is crucial. Avoid posting on social media or voicing your concerns carelessly as people might misinterpret your words.

A sexual assault is typically a second-degree felony. If convicted, an individual may face two to 20 years in state prison and pay a fine of $10,000. Under certain circumstances, the charge can elevate to a first-degree felony, which may carry severe punishment such as decades of prison time. 

Protecting your rights

A sexual assault accusation is a serious matter with long-term consequences that go beyond potential jail time or significant fines. This includes difficulties in getting a loan or rental property, fewer job opportunities, intense emotional and mental strain, and a damaged reputation. With the help of a legal professional, you may get greater clarity and protect yourself from legal ramifications.